Imagine the excitement at the trade deadline if Giants got a receiver who was once the NFL’s leader in touchdown catches.
Well, isn’t that kind of what happened this week? Although the Giants didn’t trade for reinforcements, they added a key piece when receiver Kenny Golladay went back to individual drills on Thursday. This was a significant step towards playing Sunday against Raiders. He was part of Wednesday’s private walk-through, too.
The first half of Golladay’s first season with the Giants basically went for naught as he battled injuries to his hamstring, hip and knee that caused him to miss most of training camp and the past three games. Is it time for Golladay to move on to the next season?
“I would say absolutely not,” offensive coordinator Jason Garrett said. “Kenny has dealt with some injuries, but his approach has been outstanding. He’s been a damn good player when he’s been healthy for us. We expect that again this year.”
Golladay now has 17 catches for 282 yard and is awaiting his touchdown. The Giants signed Golladay to an all-year, $72million contract. They hope to repeat his NFL-best 11 touchdown catch in 2019.
Golladay was coming off his best performance (116 yards against Saints) when he suffered a knee injury Oct. 10, against the Cowboys.
“He just has to take it day by day and get himself back and ready to go,” Garrett said. “Once he does, he’ll be a big part of what we do.”
TE Kyle Rudolph (personal reason) and practice squad OT Isaiah Wilson(illness) were not present in practice but are not part of the COVID-19 protocol. This is due to a series of false-positive tests in the building.
LB Lorenzo Carter, DB Nate Ebner (ankle), Dante Pettis (shoulder), and Sterling Shepard (quad), did not practice. Three receivers — the upgraded Golladay, the downgraded John Ross (quad) and Kadarius Toney (thumb) were limited participants, along with TE Kaden Smith.
LB Benardrick McKinney, a COVID-19 replacement was activated. He was called up to the practice squad and played in two of his games. DB Steven Parker, who made Monday’s Giants debut and was released Tuesday, was re-signed to practice squad.
Joe Judge’s staff is rarely critical even when mistakes are obvious, like a few against the Chiefs.
But here was Garrett on Shepard’s 2-yard route on a third-and-4 at the 7-yard line, forcing the Giants to settle for a field goal: “Sterling will be the first one to tell you that he probably needs to push the depth a little bit more. We felt like we had a good look there, that route was going to give us first-down depth.”
And special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey said of Riley Dixon’s shanked 34-yard punt in the fourth quarter that set up Kansas City’s winning drive: “He’ll tell you just like everybody else will tell you: It just wasn’t a good punt by him.”